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Author: mountra Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 76237  
Subject: Re: Professionally Managed versus Self Directed Date: 12/15/2011 7:53 PM
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Thanks to all for your replies, comments and advice.

I agree with Rayvt that commissions are a key factor when a FA recommends anything. Yes- I did get the 60/40 backwards and do expect inflation to soar in the future as ziggy29 sees. I am slowly going through the Merriman links and reading the Decision Rules paper.

I understand that diversification is paramount to preserving assets through retirement as CABob points out. I think it is this I am struggling with mostly. I diversify in big buckets (large, small cap, bond funds, international, REIT), but still see too (?) much positive correlation. I accept Watty56’s point that for a relatively small fee I can check in with a fee only planner to help with this aspect.

I have been a long-term buy and hold investor, but am struggling to learn when to sell or take profits and the tools to do so. I learned a hard lesson with the Netflix plummet!

I did have a relationship that did not go well with a ML advisor that I ended about 6 years ago (they were happy, but I lost money over a 10 year period) that has soured my feelings for all commission-based advisors. I do accept though that because we are asked to pay fees and commissions that this is not necessarily bad as Hawkwin points out. Being aware of the surrender charges, caps etc. is vital and information not always made obvious.

I was recently invited to a client appreciation dinner and event that was attended by some 400 (happy) clients. Those that I talked to were all nearly or in retirement, not broke, were happy with their income and accounts managed by this FA. It was a little like a ‘love fest’ and I kept thinking about Lewis’ “Elmer Gantry”! I’m still trying to decide if this had a positive or negative impact on me—the chicken was very good!

Points #4, 6 and 7 by Watty56 hit home (as they all did). Past performance maybe manipulated (?), or at least based on factors not offered to me going forward.
And, I certainly do plan to delay SOSEC until 70 unless the world ends sooner…….
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